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Used test: Peugeot 5008 vs Seat Tarraco

The 5008 and Tarraco are both stylish and practical choices, but which is the better used buy?...

Used test - Peugeot 5008 vs Seat Terraco fronts

The Contenders

Peugeot 5008 PureTech 130 Allure

List price when new: £28,645
Price today:  £20,000* 
Available from: 2018-present

The 5008 is our 2022 Used Car of the Year so it's the car to beat in this twin test.


Seat Tarraco 1.5 TSI Evo 150 SE Technology

List price when new: £29,330
Price today: £21,000*
Available from: 2018-present

The Tarraco is big, slick and capable – but is it a better all-rounder than the 5008?

*Price today is based on a 2018 model with average mileage and full service history, correct at time of writing


There's nothing quite like family life to make us put on our sensible hats. We make practicality, space and comfort our overriding priorities in a car – and, let's be honest, focusing solely on those features can be a bit, well, dull.

Ideally, you want a certain appeal as well, and that appeal is often preceded by a three-letter term beginning with 'S'. That's right, you desire SUV appeal. The good news is that with a large SUV you can have great road presence, a high driving position and rugged capability to go along with more practical qualities.

2018 Peugeot 5008 rear right tracking RHD

The Peugeot 5008 and Seat Tarraco we're testing here are two excellent seven-seat options, and they won't cost you a fortune to buy second-hand. In fact, you can save more than £8000 by choosing a 2018 model (of either car) over a new one. 

So how do they stack up when pitted head-to-head? Read on to find out...


Driving

Performance, ride, handling, refinement

In the Peugeot 5008, entry-level petrol form means a dinky 1.2-litre engine with just three cylinders and 129bhp, whereas in the Seat Tarraco you get a brawnier four-cylinder 1.5 with 148bhp.

Used Seat Tarraco rear cornering

It’s pretty obvious which car is the sprightlier performer, then, right? Actually, no: surprisingly, the 5008 proved the faster accelerating car in our tests. The difference is quite small if you’re revving the engine hard and changing up through the gears, but it’s much more noticeable when you’re trying to build speed from low revs.

This makes the 5008 the more relaxing car to drive and also means it feels more in its comfort zone along hilly routes or when you’re loaded up with people and paraphernalia. The only downside is that you feel a few more vibrations filtering up through the soles of your feet when you accelerate. The Tarraco’s engine is slightly smoother.

Peugeot 5008 driving

There’s little to split our duo when it comes to cruising refinement. You hear less tyre noise in the Tarraco at a steady 70mph but more wind noise and engine boom than you do in the 5008. Likewise, although the Tarraco has the slicker gear change, its numb clutch pedal, combined with the engine’s limited pull below 1500rpm, means you’re much more likely to stall it when pulling away.

Big wheels rarely do ride comfort any favours, and our Tarraco came on 20in ones, but even in this form it’s never fractious and actually rides town scars and potholes pretty well. A car with the 18in wheels you usually get with SE Technology trim will be comfier still.

Used Seat Tarraco front cornering

The 5008 we tested has optional 19in wheels, and is less composed than the Tarraco along town roads. Nasty scars aren’t dealt with as well and there’s more pitch and dive when you accelerate and brake, so you can sometimes feel like you’re doing a nodding dog impression. However, things are better if you can find a 5008 with standard 18in wheels (which most should be on), and in any case, it’s more comfortable and settled at higher speeds, especially on a motorway.

Compared with some rivals large SUVs, both cars are pretty agile through corners. But they’re still big cars, so it comes as no surprise that there’s some body lean in tight turns, and you wouldn’t describe either model as fun to drive. The 5008’s steering is heavier at manoeuvring speeds and quicker to respond when you turn the wheel, but both set-ups are precise enough to allow you to place the car exactly where you want it at higher speeds.


Next: What are they like inside? >

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